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History Queensland Fair 23 May 2010 Review

The 7th History Queensland Biennial Family and Local History Fair was held in a new venue, the Donald Simpson Centre at Cleveland. Exhibitors were in two main rooms with a few smaller rooms adjacent plus there was a large lunch area and refreshments available onsite. There was also plenty of parking areas but it paid to arrive early as numbers attending were high and most people seemed to stay all day. My guess is that over 500 people attended (based on the fact that Queensland State Archives had 500 bags to give out and they ran out!).

Entry cost was a modest $10.00 at the door or $8.00 with a pre-printed ticket which had been available online. With 4 speakers and access to 47 exhibitors, this represented excellent value.

The 47 exhibitors (in alphabetical order) were:

  1. Australian Scottish Community (Qld) Inc
  2. Brisbane City Council Library - Wynnum
  3. Boggo Road Gaol Historical Society Inc
  4. Boolarong Press
  5. Brisbane History Group Inc
  6. Brisbane's Living Heritage Network
  7. Caloundra Family History Research Inc
  8. Celtic Dawn
  9. Community & Personal Histories, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Services
  10. Coochiemudlo Island History Society
  11. Coopers Plains Local History Group
  12. Crows Nest Historical Society Inc
  13. Dayboro Distict History Society Inc
  14. Edwin Clark & Associates
  15. Enoggera & Districts Historical Society Inc
  16. Fellowship of First Fleeters, Moreton Chapter
  17. Find My Past Australasia
  18. Friends of Peel Island Association Inc
  19. Friends of Tingalpa Cemetery Heritage Group Inc
  20. Friends of Toowong Cemetery Association Inc
  21. Gayndah & District Historical Society Inc
  22. Garrison Communications
  23. Genealogical Society of Qld Inc
  24. Genealogy Sunshine Coast
  25. Gold Coast Family History Society Inc
  26. Historical Wireless Society of SEQ Inc
  27. Jack Sims Publications
  28. John Clements books
  29. Judy Webster
  30. Library of Australian History - Keith Johnson
  31. Logan River & Districts Family History Society Inc
  32. Mount Gravatt District Historical Association Inc
  33. National Archives Australia
  34. Nundah & Districts Historical Society Inc
  35. Queensland Family History Society Inc
  36. Queensland State Archives
  37. Queensland State Library
  38. Ray Debnam
  39. Ray Thyer's Chronologies
  40. Richlands Inala & Suburbs History Group
  41. Royal Historical Society of Queensland
  42. Southern Suburbs Branch of GSQ
  43. Toowong History Group
  44. Toowoomba & Darling Downs Family History Society Inc
  45. Tracing Trees
  46. Unlock the Past (UTP)
  47. Unlock the Past Cruise
  48. Wynnum Manly Historical Society Inc

Throughout the day there were a series of speakers:

All of the talks were well attended with standing room only in the session on Unlock The Past. Shauna shared this session with Clean Cruising, the organisers of the inaugural Unlock The Past history and genealogy cruise and with FindMyPast Australasia and Elaine Collins who introduced the new site and gave a brief demonstration as well as a brief overview of other brightsolid sites eg FindMyPast, Scotland’s People, Genes Reunited and Ancestors on Board.

From a personal view point, it was an excellent day as I was able to catch up with many friends and colleagues and to see the various projects and publications the exhibitors had on display. I even managed to restrict myself to purchasing just two books!

One lady approached me and said that she had attended a talk I gave in Townsville and I said that was back in 1994 and she said that she still remembered the talk and that I hadn’t changed. Given 16 years have passed, that was good news! Another blast from the past was a lady who had attended one of my family history classes when I was teaching at Ithaca TAFE back in the early 1990s. She had been so inspired that she was still doing family history and a keen volunteer with her local genealogy society. Another pleasing moment as she had no trouble recognising me either.

From an Unlock The Past perspective, I talked to a lot of people about UTP and answered many questions throughout the day. I gave out lots of brochures with a range of discount vouchers from UTP sponsors including FindMyPast, Gould Genealogy & History, Family Photo Book and National Institute for Genealogical Studies. I was very pleased at the attendance at my session which I shared with Clean Cruising and FindMyPast Australasia but I did feel sorry for those people standing or sitting on the floor!

At the end of the day I was a bit weary and hoarse but totally inspired to see that genealogy and family history is not only alive and well but thriving in my home town of Brisbane!


History Queensland Fair

Feedback on the Queensland History Fair at Donald Simpson Centre, Cleveland, Brisbane on 7th May.

This is the one special day a year that I take my Mum with me to the History Fair and we have been for about 5 years.

Today was a change of venue and I would like to comment on the centre. It was nice that there was a  ramp for the elderly and wheelchair access was accessible.  With all the events in the two rooms it was all nice and level no steps which really helped the elderly and the lunch area in the same location. The seminar room was a little small but it did have a  large screen for presentations.

To those societies that did there displays I must say they were all well presented and attractive with helful and friendly staff. I can see that a lot of work went into their presentations so well done all of those that must have been up early organising their displays.

I was one of the early ones to easliy get a park but parking was available near by and within access to the centre.

I attended two seminars the one with Shauna Hicks and the other with Paul Parton.

I came away with new information and undersatnding and have now begun to be a fan of Unlock My Past  which was new information to me.

The brief history and handy hints from Paul Parton about Family Search has given me some new tools to try out and I thought I new enough about Family Search and I was wrong!!

I came away with  a bag of goodies and brochures of which I am progresively going through and new understandings that I have learnt from presenters.

I scored a few bargains in the books and old genealogy magazines nothing like a good gene rummage!!

It was busy and I would say most people stayed for the day.

At lunch it was social at the tables it is amazing who you talk to over a cup of tea and naturally share our family history stories. Networking certainly was in progress and the lunch tables!!!

My elderly Mum was so pleased to get around easily.

Thanks to all of the hard woking people that put in so much effort to make this event happen. Well Done!!!